University of Leeds members prepare to strike again

Action is over the 2021-22 pay round with member resoundingly rejecting the latest offer

Parkinson Building, Leeds University

The University of Leeds branch is taking further strike action over the 2021-22 pay round, next week, on 20-24 June.

Members have lost 20% of their pay against inflation over 12 years. They have used the pay calculator to show just how many thousands of pounds staff are being cheated in their pay.

The union argues that staff are working all November and December “for free” against what they would have been earning had pay kept pace with inflation over that period.

The sector as a whole grew its surpluses by £2.2bn over the last two years and benefited to the tune of £119m from the furlough scheme – figures from The Telegraph newspaper and a freedom of information request.

Over the lockdown period, thousands of higher education staff have had to absorb the costs – heating, lighting, broadband, equipment – that would normally have been borne by the employer. At Leeds, the employer has refused to consider a payment to cover this.

The university made an offer on 15 June which was put to UNISON members in an online meeting with 84% of members voting to reject and go ahead with the strike.